Thursday, August 31, 2006

People don't kill people, Cars do

Reason magazine -- November 1999: "Should we treat guns like cars? Handgun Control Inc. has been saying so for years, and this summer Vice President Al Gore agreed. 'We require a license to drive a car in this nation in order to keep unsafe drivers off the road,' Gore said. 'As president, I will fight for a national requirement that every state issue photo licenses [for handgun buyers]. We should require a license to own a handgun so people who shouldn't have them can't get them.' Prospective licensees should have to 'pass a background test and pass a gun safety test.' Gore predicted that his plan would cause the gun lobby to 'have a fit.'

Actually, if Gore follows through on his promise to treat guns like cars, he will oversee the most massive decontrol of firearms in America since 1868, when the 14th Amendment abolished the Southern states' Black Codes, which prevented freedmen from owning guns. Although anti-gun lobbyists who use the car analogy are pushing for additional controls, laws that really did treat guns like cars would be much less restrictive, on the whole, than what we have now."

This article is timely and bracing in the wake of another mass vehicular homicide.

Read the whole article and then ponder the relative danger of automobiles when compared with guns, smoking or global warming.

Whenever anyone asks me if playing football was dangerous for myself or my son, I always respond that the ride home from football is far more dangerous than anything that happens on the field.

As a society we accept the risks of automobiles because of what cars provide and I fully accept that risk myself. If we accept the risk of death by automobiles it seems logical to ask why other, far less risky lifestyle choices are so vilified and made illegal. It is also interesting to ask what the relative benefits of those "risky" activities might be as well.

Another deadly mass slaying...

HIT AND RUN: Within half an hour, 14 pedestrians picked off one by one on streets of San Francisco: "At least 14 people were hospitalized Tuesday in San Francisco after the driver of a black 2004 Honda Pilot cut a path of destruction from the Tenderloin to Laurel Heights, striking pedestrians and a bicyclist in 13 locations starting at about 12:45 p.m."

cBS: More fake but accurate TVNewser: "The left photo is the official first-pic-of-Katie released by CBS at this year's upfront. (TVNewser posted it in May.) The right photo is an edited version of the same photo, from the September issue of Watch magazine, which is owned by CBS"
Click on the link to see the hard hitting truth telling that is synonymous with CBS News. Actually now it seems to be SEEBS. Maybe that's a memo from the Texas Air National Guard in her hand.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Easter: God meeting our need for proof.

Triablogue: This Joyful Eastertide: "
Last year, Prometheus Books published The Empty Tomb: Jesus Beyond the Grave. Sympathetic reviewers consider this missive to be the definitive refutation of the Resurrection.

Needless to say, I'm of a slightly different opinion. If you follow this link, it will take you to an extensive review which I've written of the title in question."

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Teach them well and let them lead the way...

OpinionJournal - Featured Article: "But the data on young Americans tell a different story. Simply put, liberals have a big baby problem: They're not having enough of them, they haven't for a long time, and their pool of potential new voters is suffering as a result. According to the 2004 General Social Survey, if you picked 100 unrelated politically liberal adults at random, you would find that they had, between them, 147 children. If you picked 100 conservatives, you would find 208 kids. That's a 'fertility gap' of 41%. Given that about 80% of people with an identifiable party preference grow up to vote the same way as their parents, this gap translates into lots more little Republicans than little Democrats to vote in future elections. Over the past 30 years this gap has not been below 20%--explaining, to a large extent, the current ineffectiveness of liberal youth voter campaigns today."

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

More "checked" news...

Power Line: More Staged Photographs: "The New York Times highlights an obvious Pieta-like image that, frankly, couldn't fool anyone with a normal skepticism quotient. Sure enough, the 'body still buried under the rubble' is alive and well. Which could hardly be a surprise to anyone who looks at the picture, other than, apparently, a NYT photo editor."
It's funny how their always wrong in the same direction. Ha Ha.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

It's a whole new ballgame.

BREITBART.COM - AP News Alert: "Sen. Joe Lieberman has conceded the U.S. Senate primary to challenger Ned Lamont but vowed to petition his way onto the November ballot as an independent. "

A change of mind, faith

Culture - The Washington Times, America's Newspaper: "In his new book, 'Jesus: The Only Way?' the Rev. John Snyder criticizes universalism and defends the Christian teaching that salvation is through Jesus Christ alone.
The American pastor of Crossroads International Church in Basel, Switzerland, Mr. Snyder's book is based on his research for his doctorate in theology at the University of Basel.
The following is excerpted from 'The Repentance of Rudolf Bultmann,' an appendix to the book, in which Mr. Snyder describes the funeral -- 30 years ago on Aug. 4, 1976, in Marburg, Germany -- of a leading liberal theologian:
What the name Charles Darwin is to the field of biological science, the name of Rudolf Bultmann is to the world of New Testament study. Virtually every student of theology worldwide is introduced to the writings of German scholar Rudolf K. Bultmann (1844-1976) and his students.
He is considered by many the grand master of New Testament skepticism. In Germany, he was hailed by many intellectuals as 'the greatest event since Luther.'
Bultmann is credited with launching the world-famous program of interpreting the 'Jesus myths' for modern society by 'demythologizing' the primary documents of the Christian faith. He stood like a colossus over academic biblical studies for much of the 20th century.
With variations, Bultmann's program was enthusiastically carried forward by his students, who imagined themselves to be forging ahead with ever-increasing clarity on the ways legends and myths about Jesus entered Christian tradition. His ideas form the underpinning of many who make pronouncements in the media asserting whether a particular story or saying of Jesus is authentic or not.
The movement of radical criticism has taken several different directions since his era, but his is the inspiration behind many of today's most vocal critics of the Bible. Building upon the literary principles of Bultmann, they assume that the vast majority of the recorded sayings and deeds of Jesus, although well-intentioned stories, are in the final analysis merely elaborate inventions of the early church.
So extreme were Bultmann's methods and treatment of biblical texts that he was criticized even by his old schoolmate, Karl Jaspers. But did this giant of doubt have a change of mind and repudiate his entire teaching career before he died in 1976?"
Read the whole thing.

Monday, August 07, 2006

RConversation: What Lemann didn't discuss in his New Yorker piece

RConversation: What Lemann didn't discuss in his New Yorker piece: "It's also important to point out that Lemann's article makes a lot more sense when seen in the context of an ongoing and fairly personal debate he's been having with right-wing radio host, blogger, and 'blog swarm' artist Hugh Hewitt. Last year Lemann wrote a profile of Hewit for the New Yorker, which sadly is not online - but is mentioned elsewhere on the web. In particular, see Chris Nolan's excellent dissection, with an excerpt, on Personal Democracy Form. She describes how Lemann and Hewitt disagreed strongly on whether it is desirable for journalists to strive for 'objectivity' - which Lemann preaches at Columbia - or whether the pretense of 'objectivity' is not only impossible but is a sham behind which journalists hide their failings and hidden agendas, which many bloggers on both right and left believe audiences have a right to know. Should a journalist reveal his or her voting record and other biases when covering a political story, for instance?"

Reuters admits to more image manipulation - News from Israel, Ynetnews

Reuters admits to more image manipulation - News from Israel, Ynetnews: "Reuters also said it would apply 'tighter editing procedure for images of the Middle East conflict to ensure that no photograph from the region would be transmitted to subscribers without review by the most senior editor on the Reuters Global Pictures Desk.'"
They already have a "senior editor" it's called the blogosphere.

I've had many friends ask me "who checks the blogs to make sure that what they are saying is true?" As if someone is checking Reuters or Dan Rather or the LA Times for accuracy.

Blogs check everyone. They don't care that your a "journalist" or a respected MainStream Media artery. They care that what you publish is true. And if it's not true, woe unto you.

It's not that blogs can't be wrong. It's that they don't claim that "senior editors" make them any more accurate that anyone else. It seems that "senior editors" are no silver bullet against fabrications in service of bias.

An Inconvenient Heatwave

Heat makes Pat Robertson a global warming "convert" - Yahoo! News: "Conservative Christian broadcaster Pat Robertson said on Thursday the wave of scorching temperatures across the United States has converted him into a believer in global warming.

'We really need to address the burning of fossil fuels,' Robertson said on his '700 Club' broadcast. 'It is getting hotter, and the icecaps are melting and there is a buildup of carbon dioxide in the air.'

This week the heat index, the perceived temperature based on both air temperatures and humidity, reached 115 Fahrenheit in some regions of the U.S. East Coast. The 76-year-old Robertson told viewers that was 'the most convincing evidence I've seen on global warming in a long time.'"
Sigh. I've always thought much of Environmentalism was an article of faith, now there's a new believer.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

MSM Bias Case #879-0994-900498

Pajamas Media: REUTERSGATE! The Tipping Point: "Reuters has acknowledged that its war photography from Beirut had been altered and is officially withdrawing the photograph. In a carefully worded statement Reuters admitted that “photo editing software was improperly used on this image."

This is for Dan.

Reuters. Mainstream name in international journalism right? Strike.

Media outlet to be more specific right? Strike.

Ignoring facts in service to liberal bias. Strike three called!

This is why movies like V for Vendetta might be interesting stories but silly as commentary on current society. The manipulation of the media always comes from the right in these films. Reality has another story line to offer.

From Dan Rather, to Chris Matthews, to the LA Times, to the New York Times, to Reuters and around the horn. That's how the MainStream Media turns their double plays.

Why bigger isn't always better.

STLtoday - Business - Columnists: The problem? An AOL account once held by Gauthier's late father still showed billing charges accumulating against it. The account had been dormant for months; the credit card he used for it was inactive at least as long.

Nevertheless, AOL kept charging $25.90 each month for dial-up online access. Late fees for non-payment accumulated on the credit card, too.

Gauthier even offered to send a copy of her father's obituary as proof he truly was dead. AOL was unmoved.

'An AOL service guy told me to stop complaining and learn to use a computer,' she said."
This is what you might call bad publicity.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Who's side are you on?

"Cakes have gotten a bad rap. People equate virtue with turning down dessert. There is always one person at the table who holds up her hand when I serve the cake. No, really, I couldn't, she says, and then gives her flat stomach a conspiratorial little pat. Everyone who is pressing a fork into that first tender layer looks at the person who declined the plate, and they all think, That person is better than I am. That person has discipline. But that isn't a person with discipline, that is a person who has completely lost touch with joy. A slice of cake never made anybody fat. You don't eat the whole cake. You don't eat a cake every day of your life. You take the cake when it is offered because the cake is delicious. You have a slice of cake and what it reminds you of is someplace that's safe, uncomplicated, without stress. A cake is a party, a birthday, a wedding. A cake is what's served on the happiest days of your life.

This is the story of how my life was saved by cake, so, of course, if sides are to be taken, I will always take the side of cake.

- from Eat Cake by Jeanne Ray

My religion centers around pie of course but the devotion is the same.

In all seriousness, there is something profound in having the maturity to enjoy, in moderation, the simple pleasures that God has woven throughout life to lighten our hearts and minds. To reject them is to hold God in contempt.

So, of course, if sides are to be taken, I will always take the side of pie.

Interesting Stuff